Monthly Archives: November 2018

SMART is Open!

November 26th was a big day for solar energy in Massachusetts.  As promised, the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (“DOER”) opened the application portal for the long-anticipated SMART Program.  Applications received between November 26th and November 30th will be considered to have been received at the same time.  Starting on December 1st, applications will be reviewed on a first come, first served, basis.

Also on November 26th,… More

The National Climate Assessment Projects Major Economic Impacts. The President Doesn’t Believe It. Must Not Be True.

Last week, the government released the Fourth National Climate Assessment. Not surprisingly, it’s largely consistent with the prior assessments. As other commenters have noticed, the primary difference from prior reports is one of emphasis; the Assessment now includes substantial information about the likely cost to the economy if we fail to address climate change.

I had been wondering whether it was worth doing a post about the assessment – and then I saw that the President,… More

DOER: SMART on Track for November 26 Rollout

In a series of October presentations, the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) reiterated that it plans to launch SMART on November 26, opening an online portal at http://masmartsolar.com/ to begin accepting applications. All applications received between November 26 and 11:59 PM EST on November 30 will be considered as submitted at the same time with respect to capacity block assignment.

For applications received in the initial one-week window,… More

Deja Vu All Over Again — The Trump Administration Refuses to Provide “Good Reasons” For Its Change in Course on Keystone XL

Yesterday, Judge Brian Morris granted summary judgment to plaintiffs on some of their claims challenging the State Department’s new Record of Decision for the Keystone XL project.  Whatever our Tweeter-in-chief may say, it’s actually a fairly balanced decision, which ruled in the Administration’s favor on a number of issues.

The most noteworthy part of the decision takes the State Department to task for failing to provide “good reasons” for the change in the ROD concerning climate change. … More

The UCS Wants to Preserve Existing Nuclear Plants — You Know that Means the Climate Situation Must Be Dire

The Union of Concerned Scientists just released a report, The Nuclear Power DilemmaAs Ken Kimmell, UCS’s President, said in a blog about the report, it:

calls for proactive policy to preserve nuclear power from existing plants that are operating safely but are at risk of premature closures for economic reasons or to ensure that lost nuclear capacity is replaced with carbon-free sources.… More

And Then There Were Three: Why Is Massachusetts Still Refusing to Seek NPDES Delegation?

As readers of this space know, I have been mystified by the opposition in Massachusetts to obtaining delegation of the NPDES Program.  In my temperate way, I have called it an embarrassment.

I have just learned that Idaho was recently delegated authority to operate the NPDES program.  Now, only Massachusetts, New Mexico, and New Hampshire remain undelegated.

The Boston Globe said that the current arrangement has worked. … More

A Mixed Bag For Climate Litigation Plaintiffs

Last week there were two court decisions on cases in which groups of citizens are seeking court orders requiring the government to act on climate change.  The biggest news was that the Supreme Court denied the stay requested by the United States in Juliana v. United StatesThis “Case of the Century” was supposed to go to trial on October 29.

If I were the plaintiffs,… More

The Rubber Begins to Hit the Road on Adaptation

I gave up some time ago on the idea that focusing on adaption was just a means of weaseling out of necessary measures to mitigate climate change.  As the extraordinary becomes commonplace, it’s evident that we’ve ignored the externalities of carbon longer than was prudent.

It’s thus great to see Boston’s Mayor Walsh release Resilient Boston Harbor.  Even for those who follow these issues for a living (and I have a personal stake,… More